An Army at Dawn

The War in North Africa, 1942-1943

Volume One of the Liberation Trilogy

  • Winner of the 2003 Pulitzer Prize for History
  • Winner of the 2002 AHF Distinguished Writing Award for U.S. Army History 1899-2002

In the first volume of his monumental trilogy about the liberation of Europe in WWII, Pulitzer Prize winner Rick Atkinson tells the riveting story of the war in North Africa.

The liberation of Europe and the destruction of the Third Reich is a story of courage and enduring triumph, of calamity and miscalculation. In this first volume of the Liberation Trilogy, Rick Atkinson shows why no modern reader can understand the ultimate victory of the Allied powers without a grasp of the great drama that unfolded in North Africa in 1942 and 1943. That first year of the Allied war was a pivotal point in American history, the moment when the United States began to act like a great power.

Beginning with the daring amphibious invasion in November 1942, An Army at Dawn follows the American and British armies as they fight the French in Morocco and Algeria, and then take on the Germans and Italians in Tunisia. Battle by battle, an inexperienced and sometimes poorly led army gradually becomes a superb fighting force. Central to the tale are the extraordinary but fallible commanders who come to dominate the battlefield: Eisenhower, Patton, Bradley, Montgomery, and Rommel.

Brilliantly researched, rich with new material and vivid insights, Atkinson’s narrative provides the definitive history of the war in North Africa.

Book Information

768 pages
Thirty-two pages of black-and-white pictures, with eighteen maps and illustrated endpapers
ISBN: 0-8050-8727-9
ISBN 13: 978-0-8050-8724-6

Abridged Compact Disc, 6 discs
Read by Rick Atkinson
ISBN-10: 0-7435-7099-5
ISBN-13: 978-0-7435-7099-2
Listen to a sample:

704 pages
Thirty-two pages of black-and-white pictures, with eighteen maps and illustrated endpapers
ISBN: 0-8050-6288-2
ISBN 13: 978-0-8050-6288-5

Additional WWII Resources

Readers eager to learn more about the campaign in Western Europe have no shortage of resources from which to choose. Rick Atkinson has compiled a list of other books, documents, and websites available for further study.

Find out more »